Tuesday, December 30, 2014

New Year, New Book

2014 was kind of a transition year for me in terms of writing. I took a break from writing fiction and worked instead on our RV self-help book, Tips for New RVers: Catchin' the Dream.

It was a fun way for Dick (aka RVPainter) and me to re-live our year on the road and to put some closure on the experience. We really felt that we were the quintessential "Newbies" when we started RVing and that we learned SO much about what to do and what not to do; what worked and what didn't. It just made sense to us to share that with others in the hope that it would help them avoid some of our mistakes and missteps.

Everyone embarking on an adventure like that will encounter situations that test them, but if we can help make it a little easier for even a few people, well, that would make us feel good. It takes courage to live on the road and I am proud of what we did and grateful for the experiences - the wonderful ones AND the trying ones - because they all taught me that I can do much more than I ever imagined and also taught me a great deal about myself and about letting go. It was truly the experience of a lifetime.

As we glide into 2015, I feel ready to return to my true calling - fiction writing. My next book is actually already started, but it's been setting on the back burner for a while. I needed to put some distance between Return to Canterbury (the sequel to The Christmas Village) and this new book, and to get the RVing book out of my system. I am not a writer who can move quickly from one project to the next, because I create these fictional worlds that I live in for quite a long time, so it takes me a while to move on from them.

Writing Return to Canterbury was bittersweet, because when it ended, I knew that my visits with Jamie, Kelly, Christopher, Ida, Rusty, Reggie and all the characters of Canterbury had also come to an end. They say that endings are beginnings - and they are - but I need to take some time to honor my endings before starting new beginnings.

My next book will be historical fiction. Not a children's book, but more a coming-of-age story that takes place in England at the start of World War II. It's inspired by my mother's experience, which I've written about at this blog in the past. But it's only inspired by it - it's not her actual experience because I know very little about what that was. I think of it as a way of writing the story that might have been. That's the great thing about being a writer, you get to tell the story your way and you get to change the ending. And, you get to get even with mean people by turning them into characters that everyone will love to hate :)

As far as describing the type of book I hope this next one will be - well, think of a cross between All the Light We Cannot See, Orphan Train, and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I know that's a tall order, but I'm aiming high. When I was a kid, my dream was never "to be a famous author;" my dream was "to write the kind of wonderful books that I like to read." That's still my dream. Sure, I'd love for my books to be best sellers, but I want that to be the result of them being wonderful books, not fad books with throwaway story lines that no one remembers a year later. So I'll be entering a new world soon and I expect to get lost there for quite some. Dick gave me a t-shirt once with this saying on it: "I'm in my own little world, but it's okay, they know me here." That pretty much sums it up.

Wishing everyone a Happy and Prosperous New Year. May your dreams come come, and may they be all that you hoped they would be.

Saturday, December 20, 2014


It was just two years ago that we landed here in Florida after our year on the road in our RV. Once we decided to settle down, I was fortunate to be able to return to teaching yoga at a beautiful studio right away and it's become a nurturing and supportive yoga home for me. I've made such wonderful friends here - kindred spirits whose sincere kindness and acceptance are beyond anything I've ever experienced.

Over these two years, I've also written and published two books - Return to Canterbury, the sequel to The Christmas Village, and Tips for New RVers: Catchin' the Dream, which Dick and I worked on together. It was a fun way to relive and remember our year on the road and also to share what we hope are helpful tips for others considering such an adventure. It seems like my writing juices, which went on hold while we were on the road, were ready to get flowing again because I kinda can't even believe I wrote two books in two years!

We've been renting a condo, and for a while that was nice because it felt very easy and unencumbered - something we had grown to appreciate during our RVing year. But after a while, it seemed almost TOO easy - and a little boring! We started to miss the little projects you have with a home, and the ability to have our own space and piece of earth. So we started house hunting. We looked at a LOT of houses, but ended up deciding to go with new construction. We found a sweet little development where we are now having a new home built on a small lake. It's a mixed neighborhood - meaning not just older folks but families too. We like that. It seemed to take a while for the builder to get started, but now the house is actually looking like a house so that is exciting.

2014 has been a really good year in a lot of ways. We've reconnected with dear old friends - friends we laugh with like no others and on whom we know we can count, no matter what. Friends who are like family to us now. We've been able to see family much more often too. And, a family member who had been estranged reached out and asked to reconnect early this year and that has been a wonderful, unexpected turn of events.

So it kind of feels as though some things that were broken - or at least a little mangled - have mended. I guess if you wait long enough, most things do just come around on their own, right? What doesn't serve you will leave of its own accord, and what is right for you will come, or will return. You just have to know which is which; keep your heart open but also know when it is okay to let go.

I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Bright and Beautiful New Year filled with love, laughter, true friendship and joy.

Here are a few pictures of the house:

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Check out my poem, Ocean Point, in the Literary Bohemian

One of my poems, Ocean Point, was selected for publication in the latest issue of the Literary Bohemian. You can view it by clicking here: OCEAN POINT

Below are some picture taken on Ocean Point, which is in East Boothbay, Maine at the entrance to Linekin Bay. I remember playing on these rocks when I was six years old! I don't have a picture from then, but here's one of me sitting on "my rocks" when we were there in 2012.

Loving my rocks as much at the age of 56 as I did at the age of 6!!

We vacationed there every year when I was young, and later I had a home in East Boothbay. I wish I had a picture of our house, but there doesn't seem to be one on this computer. On Sunday mornings, Dick and I liked to go to the East Boothbay General Store to get coffee and a pecan sticky bun.

I remember going into this store when I was little. It's changed hands many times in its history, of course, but in my lifetime there has always been a store there. Now they make great food in addition to the usual general store stuff. Click on the photo and you'll see what they offer now.

Then we'd take those up to the point and spend the whole day just sitting and looking.

Sitting and looking - or reading :)

It's truly one of my favorite little pieces of the planet - when I'm there, I feel like I am Home. Here are shots of what you see when you are sitting on Ocean Point.

Thursday, November 27, 2014


I am very grateful today for all my blessings,
 including the love and support of family and friends.

Many thanks to all of you whom I met here at this blog 
and who have shown such kind support for my books and for me.

Happy Thanksgiving to All!

Monday, November 24, 2014


Earlier this month, Kathryn at Shelf Full of Books reviewed THE CHRISTMAS VILLAGE and gave it FIVE STARS! Now she has reviewed the sequel, RETURN TO CANTERBURY and I'm happy to say she loved this book too - another FIVE STAR REVIEW!


A couple of other things:

There is a KINDLE COUNTDOWN SPECIAL on RIGHT NOW for RETURN TO CANTERBURY! This means that the price is just 99 cents for two days, then goes up to $1.99 for two days and then $2.99 and then returns to the original price of $3.99. So take advantage of the savings NOW!


If you buy the print versions of THE CHRISTMAS VILLAGE and RETURN TO CANTERBURY together, you'll save - in fact you can get the two books together on AMAZON for under $20!

THE CHRISTMAS VILLAGE is the perfect holiday read, not just for the kids but for the whole family. And you'll want to dive right into RETURN TO CANTERBURY to find continue the adventure and get all your questions answered.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Shelf Full of Books Reviews THE CHRISTMAS VILLAGE

Grateful for this WONDERFUL review of THE CHRISTMAS VILLAGE over at Kathryn Svendsen's SHELF FULL OF BOOKS blog. She'll be reviewing RETURN TO CANTERBURY later this month, when a Kindle Countdown promotion kicks off! You can also now save when you buy the two books together on AMAZON.


There was a lot of exciting action and suspense in the book that will hold the interest of middle graders. Even as an adult reader I didn’t want to put the book down.

I loved the old time feel to the town of Canterbury. With a look back to the depression era, The Christmas Village brought back the old time magical feel that Christmas used to have before all the electronic gadgetry brings now.

I found the resolution to Jamie’s dilemma of how to get home cleverly thought out and executed.

I absolutely loved The Christmas Village. It’s one of those favorites that’ll be one my bookshelves for years to come. I gave this book 5 stars out of 5. A great read for everyone in the family!


Saturday, October 25, 2014

Our Book about RV Life

I haven't been here in a while because I've been busy working with Dick (aka RVPainter) on our book about RVing. Many of you followed us on our journey living and traveling in our motorhome that we named the Dreamcatcher. We had our ups and downs and though I'm glad we've settled down again, I can honestly say that it was the best time of my life in terms of personal growth. I learned so much about RVing, sure, but also about myself. And the travel was awesome.

Our book isn't a memoir of our life on the road, it's a self-help book for new and prospective RVers. We do tell some of our Road Stories, but only in the context of illustrating certain points. So this is a very different book from my other books or even from my blog posts.

Our book is called Tips for New RVers: Catchin' the Dream. It's written mostly in  Q&A and Tips, along with some Road Stories. It's not a nitty-gritty how-to book; rather it's an overview of basic aspects of RV life. When we were RV Newbies, we found that getting too much detailed information all at once could be overwhelming. So we wanted to make our book more of an overview and introduction to important topics, without trying to cover everything there is to know about every aspect of RVing. We hope that we've made it not only informational and educational, but accessible and entertaining as well.

The book should be out in about a month. As I mentioned, it's for new RVers, so it's probably too basic for experienced Road Warriors. But if you or someone you know is thinking about trying RVing, or is pretty new to it, it could be a helpful resource.

I'll keep you posted on the release date. In the meantime, I've set up a website for the book here:

Relaxing on a beautiful day at Dale Hollow State Resort Park in Kentucky - the best part of RV life.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Cathedral Rock - Red Rock Crossing

Just had to share this latest painting from Dick - I asked him to do some southwest paintings and he's really delivered!

This is the view of Cathedral Rock from Red Rock Crossing, in Sedona, Arizona. We spent many happy days sitting on the red rocks there by Oak Creek, with this exact view.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Banana Head

Dick has been calling me Banana Head and I don't know why!

Working on our RV how-to book, The Newbie's Guide to RVing. It's pretty close to finished!

Then I have to figure out how to publish it myself on Amazon. But as Scarlett O'Hara said, "I'll think about that tomorrow!"

Hope you have a good one.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Return to Canterbury & The Christmas Village are FREE through Kindle Unlimited

Both of my books


Are now FREE through Amazon's Kindle Unlimited program. Kindle Unlimited is a subscription program in which members pay a monthly fee that allows them to choose from over 600,000 ebooks to read for free. 

The authors still get paid their royalty, so don't worry that you aren't supporting the authors!


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

GIVEAWAY! The Watchers: Book 1 Knight of Light

Continuing with the launch of Deirda Eden's The Watchers Book 1: Knight of Light, scroll to the end of this post to enter the GIVEAWAY! You could win a copy of the book or a $100 Amazon Gift Card!

In England, 1270 A.D., Auriella (pronounced yurr-ee-ella) flees her village after being accused of witchcraft. Pursued by nightmarish creatures, she struggles to accept the truth about her powers.

“The Watchers” are supernatural beings in human form whose duty it is to protect and guard mankind from the armies of darkness. Unfortunately, some of these Watchers go bad.

Deirdra Eden’s The Watcher’s Series is written in a traditional fairytale style with a young girl’s discovery of incredible, but dangerous powers within herself, a cast of humorous side-kicks, (including a dwarf, pixie and dragon) a quest for greater self-discovery and purpose, and villains of epic proportions.

Watch the amazing Knight of Light book trailer on youtube.

About the Author

"My goal in writing is to saturate my books with intrigue, mystery, romance, and plot twists that will keep my readers in suspense. I want to see fingerprints on the front and back covers where readers have gripped the novel with white knuckles!

Aside from writing, I enjoy jousting in arenas, planning invasions, horseback riding through open meadows, swimming in the ocean, hiking up mountains, camping in cool shady woods, climbing trees barefoot, and going on adventures."

-Deirdra Eden

Find Deirdra Eden and The Watchers Series online at AmazonDeirdra's website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Wattpad, and Pinterest.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, September 1, 2014


I'm delighted to participate in the book launch of 

Deirda Eden's
The Watchers 
Book 1: Knight of Light

Read on for a Story Summary, a bit about Deirdra and a Link to the Youtube book trailer!
Come back later in the week to enter the GIVEAWAY for a copy of the book!

Story Summary:

 In England, 1270 A.D., Auriella (pronounced yurr-ee-ella) flees her village after being accused of witchcraft. Pursued by nightmarish creatures, she struggles to accept the truth about her humanity.

Filled with fairies, dwarves, pixies, dragons, demons, and monsters, Knight of Light is an enthralling tale that will capture the imaginations of readers young and old.

“The Watchers” are supernatural beings in human form whose duty it is to protect and guard mankind from the armies of darkness.
Unfortunately, as the Book of Enoch mentions, some of these Watchers go bad. Although the mythology is based on these texts, Deirdra Eden’s The Watcher’s Series is written in a traditional fairytale style with a young girl’s discovery of incredible, but dangerous powers within herself, a cast of humorous side-kicks, a quest for greater self-discovery and purpose, and villains of epic proportions.

Watch the amazing Knight of Light book trailer on youtube.

About the Author

"My goal in writing is to saturate my books with intrigue, mystery, romance, and plot twists that will keep my readers in suspense. I want to see fingerprints on the front and back covers where readers have gripped the novel with white knuckles!

Aside from writing, I enjoy jousting in arenas, planning invasions, horseback riding through open meadows, swimming in the ocean, hiking up mountains, camping in cool shady woods, climbing trees barefoot, and going on adventures."

-Deirdra Eden

Find Deirdra Eden and The Watchers Series online at AmazonDeirdra's website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Wattpad, and Pinterest.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Power to the People

Here's an update for those of you who read my post about the employee and customer revolt that took place when Arthur T. Demoulas was fired as CEO of Market Basket, by a Board of Directors controlled by his cousin Arthur S. Demoulas. Yup, both named Arthur. Read the ending to the story via this link:


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Back to School Book Sale

The Christmas Village on Kindle is currently just 99 cents and the print version only $8.99!

Get the kids, grand kids, nieces and nephews off to a good reading start this school year, with this exciting (and not just for Christmas) book about 12-year-old Jamie, who longs to escape his troubles by disappearing into his grandma's miniature Christmas village. It's a roller coaster adventure that includes a little time travel, lots of suspense and surprises right to the very end.

Follow it up with the sequel, Return to Canterbury, which re-unites Jamie with his friends Kelly and Christopher, as they try to thwart a greedy villain's plans to destroy their beloved town of Canterbury, Vermont. 

Read the reviews from kids, teachers and readers of all ages HERE.



Wednesday, August 20, 2014


Dick has his ETSY paintings on sale for the end of summer - inventory clearance! Most prices are under $75.


Lots of seascapes, like this...

And this ....

And this....

They are going fast so check it out and see if there's one you or someone else will love! I mean, we're talking original paintings for under $75 people!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Why What's Happening at Market Basket Should Matter to Us All

If you aren't from New England, you may never have heard of the Market Basket supermarket chain. When I was growing up in Andover, MA, it was called DeMoulas, which is the name of the family that started it. Somewhere along the line the name changed to Market Basket, but the Demoulas family still owns it.

Problem is, the Demoulases are a family divided. The current players are two fellows named Arthur Demoulas - Arthur S. and Arthur T. The two Arthurs have been warring for many years. Until recently, Arthur T. controlled the majority vote and was the CEO. But this year, Arthur S. gained control of the majority and immediately got the Board to vote to fire Arthur T.

And that's when it gets interesting. Turns out that Arthur T. is a man beloved by the employees (more than 25,000 of them) for his fairness and humane management style. Employees feel he cares about them, knows their names and treats them well by offering fair pay and benefits. Customers are loyal too, because Market Basket offers good product selection, fair prices and convenient locations.

There is no union at Market Basket. Yet the employees have refused to stand idly by and simply allow what they believe to be a wrongful action - the firing of Arthur T.

A handful of top level managers got the ball rolling with their refusal to support the Board's decision. They were promptly fired. Then the truck drivers refused to deliver goods from the warehouses to the stores. It snowballed fast, as employees began protesting peacefully during breaks. Not just a few employees - thousands of them. Customers quickly joined in supporting the employees by boycotting the stores - easy enough to do because most of the shelves are bare. But customers have also gone so far as to join the protests and speak at rallies.

Arthur T. Demoulas - Artie - was in my graduating class at Andover High School. I didn't know him then and I don't know him now. A number of my high school friends think he was and is a great guy. A few people on our Andover Townie Facebook page didn't like him so much. So I'm not here to nominate Arthur T. for sainthood. He's just a person like the rest of us, who's life has probably got check marks in both the plus and minus columns like we all do.

BUT! He has done something pretty amazing, and that is that he has run a profitable modern corporation in a way that makes his employees feel like they matter. So much so that they have now put their jobs - their livelihoods - on the line to support him.

Yes, the employees and customers of Market Basket are standing up for a person - Artie T. But they are really standing up for something deeper; something that Artie T's management style and philosophy fostered; something that matters to everyone. They are standing up for their right to work for a company that sees them as partners in its success - not as pawns or possessions. Artie T. created a work environment that gave his employees a sense of dignity.

I think that many leaders of modern corporations think employees don't care about their employers beyond their paychecks and benefits. But it's kind of a chicken and egg thing - who stopped caring first? The employees or the employers?

The Market Basket case should show companies -large or small - something very important:

People at the top of companies are not the only people who matter. A company's success depends on ALL the people who work there and all the people who buy its products or services. People want to care about where they work. People want to be treated humanely and fairly. People want to feel like they are part of something that matters. People want to contribute to something that succeeds. People want to be proud of what they do and where they work.

And if you create a work environment that fosters that, people WILL stand up for you. And if you don't, they WILL fight against you - overtly or covertly - and they CAN take you down. People are not disposable. People are not dispensable. And, as Market Basket is quickly finding out, in today's environment, people are not instantly replaceable. Surprise, surprise, surprise.

Market Basket employees and customers believe that they are trying to save this company. They have reminded us that we all do matter and we all can make a difference. They have shown us that they will not be treated like cattle. They will not be treated like possessions. They will not be treated like interchangeable parts. They have shown that people will stand up and fight for what they think is right, even at great cost to themselves. Leaders of companies everywhere should sit up and take notice.

Click  HERE to go to the Save Market Basket Facebook Page

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


We settled here in Punta Gorda about a year and a half ago. It seems like yesterday, doesn't it? Yet it also seems like we've been here a long time. We've been happily renting a very nice condo and enjoying the freedom that renting allows.

Relaxing on our lanai
 I've been teaching yoga at a beautiful local studio. Here I am practicing on the lanai.

And of course, I wrote and published Return to Canterbury during our first year here. Was that really just last year???? Now that seems long ago....

This year I've been teaching a lot and I've been working on our "How-to" RV book. It's almost done - hope to have it out this fall!

We didn't know anything about Punta Gorda when we landed here - it was really pure chance that this is where we stopped RVing and settled down. But it turned out to be a great stop.

Our friends Al and Elaine have a home not far from here, my niece attends college a few hours away, and we have other family within driving distance. Friends and family have come to visit - it's the kind of place where people like to come and visit you! Sunshine! Palm trees! Beaches! What's not to like?

That's Al and Elaine
Marylou and Jim

Family gathering in Naples

Boca Grande, our favorite beach

As nice as renting has been, we've gotten the itch to have our own home again. Renting is carefree, but carefree can be a little ... boring! We miss decorating a place and making it our own.

And home prices are so affordable here and interest rates so low that we can pay less for a mortgage than we pay for rent! It makes sense to buy.

We started looking around April, but weren't finding anything we liked. So we've decided to have a new home built here in PG! It will be ready around March of next year.

Here is the land on which our house will be built!

Our house lot

Next year we plan to go to Santa Fe to arrange for our STUFF IN STORAGE to be moved here. Remember this? 

Our stuff in storage

We closed the door, locked it up and haven't seen our STUFF in over two years. Some of it we'll be glad to see again, but I'm sure we'll look at some of it and ask, "WHY THE HECK DID WE KEEP THIS??"

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Acadia Vacation

Some of you may remember our stop in Acadia during our 2012 Road Trip in the RV. We lived in Maine for 20 years, but never went to Acadia until that trip! Well, it was one of many highlights of that adventure.

While driving around Acadia, we happened upon the sweetest cottage in Bass Harbor. I fell in love with it and said, "I'd like to stay there some day." Then last year, my friend Marylou and I were messaging on FB and wishing we could hang out together. On a whim, I sent her the link to the cottage, and the next thing we knew, we'd booked it for July 2014 and were counting down the days.

When we landed at Logan Airport in BOSTON, we expected to see Marylou and Jim waiting for us at baggage claim. But the first people we saw standing there were our other dear friends - Elaine and Big Al!

At first I thought, Oh, they must be meeting someone who's flying in too! But NO! There were there just to surprise US! That's what  good friends do - they Show Up just because they love you!

Marylou and Jim arrived a few minutes later and it was like a big family reunion at Carousel 6.


First stop on our way up the coast - YORK, MAINE, where we lived happily for 13 years.

From left to right: My hubby JR, Me, Marylou, Jim. And starring in the background -  Nubble Light.

Marylou and I have known each other since SECOND GRADE! And we went to high school with Jim.

Next stop: Red's Eats in WISCASSET, ME for their world famous lobster rolls. They give you more than one whole lobster! Nothin' but lobstah and a little mayo or drawn butter - your choice. We waited over an hour in line to get to the order window, but it was SO worth it!

Here is the cottage we rented in BASS HARBOR . It's called The Little Island House.

You can see why I fell in love with it!

 It's got two units - one up, one down. Perfect for two couples traveling together. Or a family that needs a little separate space :)

The cottage is RIGHT ON BASS HARBOR. I mean, right ON it. The water comes onto the rocks under the lower deck. 

The dock in this picture runs right along side. Bass Harbor is a working fishermen's harbor, so those are almost all lobster boats out there.

We had a view of the harbor out of every window - 180 degrees.This is the view to the east from our deck.

Here are a couple of shots taken inside the cottage. See how bright and comfortable it is? And check out the fireplace! Plus a big, roomy kitchen stocked with everything you'd ever need and more.

I'd get up early every morning, wrap myself in blankets and sit out on the deck to watch the fishermen go out:. Someone had to do it!!

There are several mountains on Mt. Desert Island in Acadia. 

Here we are at the top of CADILLAC MOUNTAIN:

And a couple more shots from up there:

Gorgeous, HUH?????

A local fisherman named Gott runs an excursion boat from the dock by the Little Island House. It takes you out around the islands and he gives you tons of great information about their inhabitants, what life was like on the islands in the early days of settlement and the evolution of the fishing industry in the area. We saw seals and bald eagles.

This is BASS HARBOR LIGHT seen from the boat:

Those are seals on the rocks:

There's a Windjammer schooner that goes out of BAR HARBOR and we took that on our last day there. That's JR, Me and Marylou (Jim was taking the picture):


And this is just me and my sweetie:

We were sad to leave our lovely Little Island House, but our adventure wasn't quite over yet. On the way back to Massachusetts, we stopped again in York Maine because our high school friend Sue and her husband Alan were starting their vacation there. So I got to see another dear friend, if only for a short time. 

This is Me, Marylou and Sue - high school chums:

On our last day, Sunday, we went into the North End in BOSTON. It rained, but we still had a great time eating pizza and getting cannolis from Mr. Mike's - the most amazing Italian bakery on the planet. Here we are having lunch at Quattro's:

This was one of our most FUN VACATIONS EVER!  You can see from the pics that we were blessed with amazing weather. Very lucky - as in Maine you could get socked in with rain and fog for a whole week ( OR LONGER!! )

I will treasure memories of this trip always. The place -the harbor, the sweet, comfortable cottage, the views, watching the boats come and go. The boat trips. The FOOD!!! OMG it's diet time!! But most of all the friendship. What a wonderful thing it is to have friends with whom you feel so comfortable and have so much fun. We laughed and smiled the whole time. Right now, I'm feeling very blessed and grateful for our many adventures, but mostly for the love and true friendship in our lives.